The Gips Schüle Foundation can look back on a long history. In 1870, the couple Eduard and Marie Schüle founded the first gypsum works in Bad Cannstatt near Stuttgart. Thanks to entrepreneurial ability and technical expertise, the company continued to develop. In particular, implementation of innovative technologies such as the first steam engine or the early use of trucks in the Stuttgart area brought about the hoped-for growth.
As early as 1929, the Schüle family started collaborating with the Institute of Acoustic and Thermal Technology, the predecessor of the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP, thus laying the foundation for research funding. In 1965, the Gips Schüle Foundation was established and became recognized as a legal entity to support the company’s employees. In 1979, the purpose of the foundation was extended. Just as research and development enabled the Schüle company to grow back then, the aim was now to promote this more intensively in order to give medium-sized companies a further chance to expand.
Once the extended purpose of the foundation had been formulated by those responsible, an agreement was soon reached on the implementation of the new guidelines. The goal was to develop new and environmentally-compatible building materials and methods. The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, which was committed to promoting applied research, quickly found the ideal partner in 1979. The Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP in Stuttgart was assigned a Gips Schüle Department, for which the foundation erected its own building in 1984. To this day, scientists continue to research a wide range of building physics topics here. A large number of projects in this field have been brought to production maturity in partnerships with medium-sized companies.
Promotion of young talent and teaching
The promotion of young talent is a key aspect of the Gips-Schüle Foundation. The Foundation has been awarding the Gips Schüle Prize to young scientists since 1993. Every three years, outstanding final theses are awarded the 3,000 Euro prize. Today, the Foundation focuses primarily on universities. For example, it supports doctoral colleges, awards scholarships to students or sets up endowed professorships. The Gips Schüle Foundation attaches great importance to the promotion of interdisciplinary research, including socio-psychological topics such as the interaction between humans and indoor areas.